Schultz dodges on whether he would drop out if it looks like he'll get Trump reelected

Potential independent presidential candidate Howard Schultz dodged a question by CNN's Poppy Harlow late Tuesday over whether he would drop out of the race if it looked like he would "get President TrumpDonald John TrumpSarah Huckabee Sanders becomes Fox News contributor The US-Iranian scuffle over a ship is a sideshow to events in the Gulf South Korea: US, North Korea to resume nuclear talks 'soon' MORE reelected" as a spoiler, asking, "How can you spoil a system that is already broken?" 

"If you run, Mr. Schultz, and if you look at the polls in the fall of 2020 and it looks like you are going to be a spoiler, like you will get President Trump reelected, will you drop out of the race?" Harlow asked during a network town hall event.

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"A very important question, so let’s clarify this right now, right here, on national TV, on CNN," Schultz replied. "First off, the issue of being a spoiler, how can you spoil a system that is already broken? It’s just not working."

"So it’s not— it’s not the right word," the former Starbucks CEO continued. "Now, what I’ve said publicly and I want to repeat, if the math doesn’t tally up when I get through the next three or four months and I take my message out to the American people and I continue to talk this way about how concerned I am about the country and how much I think we can do so much better under a different process, if the numbers don’t add up, I will not run for president, because I will not do anything, whatsoever, to reelect Donald Trump. No one wants to see him fired more than me."

Schultz, 65, began publicly mulling a presidential run as a self-described "centrist independent" last month.

His flirtation with the race has drawn the ire of Democrats, who have publicly voiced concern he could hurt their nominee in swing states and help Trump win reelection.

The CNN event in Houston had sparked criticism, primarily from the left, with many questioning why the network would provide him a stage normally reserved for declared candidates.

Schultz has also done multiple interview across all major broadcast news organizations, including an appearance on CBS's "60 Minutes" last month.